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As more insurers turn to preferred pharmacy networks to decrease costs, their efforts are being met with some resistance by plan members who may be finding it difficult and inconvenient to switch pharmacy providers. In January, Manulife Financial Corp.’s move to a preferred pharmacy network with Loblaw Cos. Ltd.’s Shoppers Drug Mart was met with […]

While there’s multiple opportunities for the use of artificial intelligence in the employee benefits space — including making the claims process more efficient and personalizing the plan member experience — one of the biggest advantages of the technology is the ability to streamline administrative tasks, allowing employees to focus on more value-added work in addition […]

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While preferred pharmacy networks have been around for nearly a decade, most benefits plan members aren’t aware that these arrangements have become standard, says Suzanne Lepage, a private health plan strategist. Preferred provider networks are common arrangements that businesses across a variety of industries enter into to help deliver consistent value, quality and cost containment, said the Canadian Life […]

The estimated cost to transfer retiree pension risk to an insurer in a competitive bidding process decreased from 101.8 per cent of a plan’s accounting liabilities in November to 100.5 per cent of those liabilities in December, according to Milliman Inc.’s latest pension buyout index. The index uses the FTSE above median AA curve and […]

  • By: Staff
  • February 15, 2024 February 14, 2024
  • 09:00
Ontario appeal court ruling marks substantial shift in enforcement of termination clauses

The Ontario Court of Appeal’s affirmation of a $1.5 million punitive damages award — reportedly the largest award of its kind in a Canadian long-term disability case — may signal greater exposure for employers and insurers that fail in their duty to treat such claims in good faith. “The court had no problem with the […]

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In the year ahead, the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association will continue its advocacy efforts to ensure the federal government’s proposed pharmacare plan extends coverage for those who lack benefits without disrupting workplace benefits that millions of working Canadians rely on, says Stephen Frank, the association’s president and chief executive officer. The right approach to […]

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More than half (58 per cent) of global insurers say they anticipate higher health benefits costs over the next three years, with the average global cost trend projected to increase by 9.9 per cent in 2024, according to a new survey by WTW. The survey, which polled more than 260 insurers representing 66 countries, found […]

  • By: Staff
  • December 6, 2023 December 5, 2023
  • 09:00
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The estimated cost to transfer retiree pension risk to an insurer in a competitive bidding process increased from 101.1 per cent of a plan’s accounting liabilities in September to 101.9 per cent of those liabilities in October, according to Milliman Inc.’s latest pension buyout index. The index uses the FTSE above median AA curve and annuity […]

  • By: Staff
  • November 22, 2023 November 22, 2023
  • 15:00
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Canada’s life and health insurers paid out a record $114 billion in health and retirement benefits last year, up $11 billion since before the coronavirus pandemic and up 60 per cent from a decade ago, according to the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association’s annual fact book. “During a year when many households faced higher […]

  • By: Staff
  • September 29, 2023 September 28, 2023
  • 09:00
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Three-fifths (60 per cent) of benefits plan sponsors say the costs of their health benefits plan increased in the past three years, according to the 2023 Benefits Canada Healthcare Survey. It found this percentage decreased from 66 per cent when the question was last asked in 2016 and was unchanged from 2015 (60 per cent). […]

  • By: Staff
  • September 25, 2023 September 22, 2023
  • 09:00